SAN DIEGO: Stoorza Ziegaus & Metzger has lost one of its longtime leaders.
SAN DIEGO: Stoorza Ziegaus & Metzger has lost one of its longtime
Alan Ziegaus, who spent more than 16 years as a senior exec at the San
Diego-based PR and public affairs firm, exited February 29 ’to pursue
some particular business interests,’ he said in a statement released
Chairperson Gail Stoorza-Gill said it has not yet been decided whether
her agency will be renamed now that both Ziegaus and Bobbi Metzger (the
former head of the Sacramento office, who departed several years ago)
are no longer with the company.
A leading Republican strategist, Ziegaus headed up much of SZ&M’s
political campaign work, serving as senior counsel during Governor Pete
Wilson’s successful 1994 reelection bid. In addition, the longtime
partner wore many management hats at the agency and was president until
David De Pinto’s appointment as CEO last July. Most recently, he had
been in charge of the San Diego public affairs practice - a position De
Pinto said he hopes to have filled within the next week or two.
’While it’s sad that Alan is leaving, he has definitely made his mark on
the agency,’ said Stoorza-Gill.
Ziegaus’ departure has been viewed as another sign that Stoorza-Gill is
putting the agency on the auction block, but both she and De Pinto
insist the firm is committed to remaining independent.
’Before hiring Dave last year, I came to a very studied decision to not
sell the agency,’ Stoorza-Gill stressed. Added De Pinto, ’We are very
clear about our goal of staying independent. Alan’s leaving doesn’t
change anything regarding the direction of the firm.’
SZ&M may not be courting a buyer right now, but several industry players
said the firm was taking meetings about a year ago. ’I know they were in
talks with at least two major agencies, but didn’t find the right
Maybe that’s why Gail decided to hire De Pinto to handle day-to-day
management of the firm,’ said one source.
As the last remaining independent agencies with solid strongholds in the
lucrative California public-affairs arena, SZ&M, LA-based Rogers &
Associates and Sacramento’s Deen & Black are considered hot
As one local pro put it, ’You simply cannot be a large independent in
California without getting knocks on your door.’